Friday, 16 May 2008

Alanya and Pot Luck Dinner

Hi from Clare, The eighty rally boats packed in tightly at Kemmer marina managed to get away promptly at 4am to travel the 68 miles to Alanya Turkey. The trip consisted of pleasant sailing, a thunder storm, rain and 20 knot wind. We arrived late afternoon at Alanya marina which will not be completed until October 2008. No water, no electricity, no showers or toilets. All this we can cope with but two metres of murky water and a 2 metre keel caused a few problems. We nudged a rock backing into the marina and we could felt the boat gently bumping the bottom whenever we drifted sideways in the pen. This happened 3 times and twice at about 2:30 am. waking Andrew up.

On arrival we did not have the usual cocktail party and so we had a pot luck dinner on the marina. Everyone brought a dish and we erected some crude tables behind the boats and ate like kings. I was amused watching Pat throughout the day swinging around below preparing dinner. All the initial sea sickness gone she has mastered propping herself against the furniture whilst cooking and running along the bench couch to get to the cupboards.

Thursday we went on a bus tour around the extremely modern and almost European looking city. It is a popular tourist destination with beautiful sandy beaches,high rise hotel accommodation, endless restaurants, shopping complexes, palm trees and gardens with fountains; not at all like other Turkish towns we have seen.

We visited "The Cave of the Dripping Stone" with stalactites and stalagmites, but no better than what we have in Australia. Then onto Kale (fortress) and the ancient city dating back to 44BC. We went to lunch at another trout farm and had a fantastic smorgasbord lunch. In the afternoon we went to more caves and came back to the marina via one of the newest shopping complexes with exclusive shops. All bags and people were scanned before entry, just like an airport.

We had welcome cocktails organized by the Alanya Municipality then onto a restaurant for our second five course Rally Dinner with dancing and entertainment. Ron had the honor of presenting the Australian flag to the Mayor of Alanya and did us proud with a short and very gracious speech. The venue was beautiful and the food delicious. The entree was a huge mezza plate each (two plates would have been enough for our table of seven). I stopped eating after the entree and although the rest of the dinner looked lovely, I just couldn't eat anymore. I noticed the Mylanta on the breakfast table this morning, so I guess our other crew members were suffering!

This morning Pat and I have been cooking meals in preparation for the 120 mile overnight crossing tonight to Cyprus. Andrew and Ron have been going to the necessary information meetings and doing boat chores.

The engine is now running, Pat is washing the dishes, Andrew is like a thoroughbred at the starting gate, Ron is the first mate and line handler and I had better go.

love CANDY

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